Archive for August 16th, 2008

Murder in the brewery

I’ve been meaning to write more about beer in popular culture, fiction, books and music. There is a lovely book by Tim Powers, The Drawing of the Dark, which is somewhere in a box with the rest of my SF and fantasy paperbacks. There are the Nero Wolfe books by Rex Stout, where the hero is dependent on his daily intake of brown ale. These books are also stacked away, and I never seem to find time to open them.

Colin Dexter’s hero Inspector Morse is a more current beer lover, well known from both the books and several TV series. I bought Series 4 for a particular episode, The Sins of the Father.

I won’t give away the plot, which is not, as far as I can see, based on any of the books. This means that it lacks a bit compared to the best of Dexter’s storytelling, but there is some brilliant dialogue here.

The story is centered on a brewery, which has been a family operation for 150 years, and where the owning family is a caricature of British snobbishness. There is a hostile takeover bid from a larger brewery, and the head of the family and manager of the brevery is found murdered.

Morse arrives at their house, and is met by the butler:

-May I have your name, sir? Rank?

-I’ts important, is it?

-I have to announce you!

A Morse/Lewis interchange:

-The body was found at the bottom of a vat.

-Sounds like a good way to go..

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